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A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News

Baldelli to Yankees: “That would be false”

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Jan 16, 2010 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

There is a Facebook page attributed to Rocco Baldelli that says the outfielder, “just came to a mutual agreement with the New York Yankees.”

“That would be false,” Brian Cashman said.

Such is the world of the Internet.

Cashman acknowledged that the Yankees are talking to several players – “We’re trying to assess our legitimate choices in the sandbox we’re playing in,” he said — but the team has reached an agreement with none of them.

I now return you to your regularly scheduled Brett Gardner discussion.

By the way, great job by the guys at River Ave. Blues to spot the Facebook page. You never know with this sort of thing. It was certainly worth a quick phone call to the GM.





84 Responses to “Baldelli to Yankees: “That would be false””

  1. blake January 16th, 2010 at 11:32 am

    If Rocco would play for free he would be great for the bench but he might be the biggest health risk in all of baseball.

  2. m January 16th, 2010 at 11:41 am

    Nice analysis, Chad. Let’s hope that Gardner stays true to form and will adjust to the majors like he’s adjusted to other levels.

    Lower expectations mean less chance of being disappointed. People think Gardner’s been in the majors a long time. It just seems that way. It wasn’t his first rodeo, but in a way it was. I say give the kid (guy) some time and a chance to grow into the role (whatever it may be).

    I see what you’re saying. I just want to say that I firmly believe that there are reasons Damon hasn’t signed. I don’t know what they are, but in my heart I don’t think it’s because we’ve “only” got $2M left to spend.

    If the Yankees want to sign a good player like Damon, they will. Let’s say it takes $6-7M to sign Damon for a year. Do you think they’d say, “Sorry, we can’t go $5M over budget”? Do you think they’d hold on to Gaudin over Damon, even if the budget was really a concern? I believe there is a budget, and the money is finite. But we’re really talking pennies here.
    I know I raised some eyebrows saying that Damon was more of a part-time player (in my eyes). I only meant it in that Damon is older and they’ve been letting the older guys rest more. And he’s had issues with his eyes, head, calves, etc that kept him off the field. Part of it is wanting to go younger and more athletic.

    Baldelli would be younger, but maybe not more athletic. But he’d be a part time player and be paid accordingly.

    So, even if we do sign Damon or any inferior fielder, I see his role being diminished a little bit as we put our best fielders out there at certain times.

  3. Damon enjoy 27....think 28 January 16th, 2010 at 11:41 am

    It’s not happening, the guy is too big a risk!

  4. blake January 16th, 2010 at 11:43 am

    Chad, what’s your take on a possible trade for Conor Jackson? Is it possible and if so what do you think of him?

  5. Chris in Durham January 16th, 2010 at 11:45 am

    I like Gardner as the everyday LFer. Having a gritty right-hander like Baldelli to pair with him sounds like a nice fit.

    But I think it unlikely that Brian Cashman will bring in a guy who couldn’t be counted on, if needed, to play 150 games.

  6. Chad Jennings January 16th, 2010 at 11:46 am

    If the Diamondbacks were going to trade Jackson, I don’t think they would have designated Eric Byrnes. They have a team that can win in that division, and I can’t see them selling low after Jackson’s 2009 season.

  7. DB January 16th, 2010 at 11:47 am

    You were on top of this with the quickness Chad, great job!

    Rocco had a league minimum contract with a lot of incentives last year, RAB greatly details how he could fit. If the yanks are looking for just a right handed bench option like they say they are, he has the most upside.

  8. blake January 16th, 2010 at 11:55 am

    Baldelli is very talented and of all the platoon options he has maybe the most upside but between the Chronic Fatigue syndrome (I think that’s what he was diagnosed with) and all the other injuries he is probably also the biggest risk to get absolutely nothing out of him.

  9. Rich in NJ January 16th, 2010 at 11:57 am


    I have no idea if the $2m figure is firm or even real. But again, referencing Joel Sherman (I apologize for that!), as we recently discussed, Hal supposedly turned down Cash’s attempt to trade for Cameron. If that’s true, it indicates that there is a limit to how much money that he is willing to spend.

    The reason Damon hasn’t signed, imo, is that he has had unrealistic expectations about his market price. For example, it has been reported that he turned down a 2 year $14m deal from the Yankees. Wouldn’t you agree that if that’s true, and the offer was still on the table, that he would be willing to accept it now?

    The Yankees, however, apparently have a payroll limit, and it seems that they no longer have that $7m to spend, although granted, it may not actually be $2m. So it’s probably somewhere in between these parameters.

    Consequently, if Damon informed Cash that he understands that the market is less than he had imagined, but that he still wants to play here, Cash might tell him that we no longer have $7m in our budget, but we can (with Hal’s permission) extend what we wanted to spend and give you $5m (or maybe $6m).

    Under that scenario, $2 + $2.5m (Gaurdin’s money), gets you very close to the requisite $5-$6m while remaining within the supposed budget.

    Of course, this is all speculation, but as I said, we can only go by what is reported.

  10. Ed January 16th, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    Looking at the Facebook page it looks like a lot of pages that fans create. But if there was some kind of agreement in the works, wouldn’t Brian Cashman deny it until much after the ink had dried and there had been a physical?

  11. bru January 16th, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    the problem with baldelli or players similar is what happens if gardner just can’t handle it & or an injury too any of the 3 o.f.


    or swish having a bad year?

    all 3 o.f. spots are risky
    we know about swish & gardner.throw in cg against lefties

    the mix doesn’t feel right

    gardner,cg,swish,nj & no bench at all for the o.f.

    a lot of things can go wrong with no players too stop the bleeding & if we trade for an o.f. we will get robbed blind

    so instead of just money it will cost us prospects in addition

    imo it could cost us much more later when we should of done it right from the start

  12. blake January 16th, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    I’ve thought the same thing. If they can trade Gaudin them they could sign Damon for 5 or 6 million and still stay around the projected budget..this is assuming of course that Damon would accept that.

    I agree that Damons defense makes him not what he used to be but if we are talking one year then I think people are greatly underestimating what Damon brings to the table.

  13. Chad Jennings January 16th, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    He might deny it anyway, but all I can do is ask the question. And Cashman seemed pretty adamant about the story being false.

  14. YankeeRay January 16th, 2010 at 12:06 pm

    I admit to know very little about the illness that Baldelli has. If that is not something that can be cured or controlled then I don’t think Cash would be in on him.
    But, if it is controllable then he would be a perfect fit for a RH platoon player in LF. He is a good defender and has good speed with a little pop in his bat.
    He was at one time considered the future all star CF for the Rays and as a part time player for a year until we get the real Rays all star, he could fit.

  15. Go Johnny ! January 16th, 2010 at 12:07 pm

    I listened to a sports host yesterday . He compared the Patriots now to the former Yankees teams of the last 8 yrs, as old. They hired a bunch of players who couldn’t play up to their reputations, that was the reason they were brought to the Yankees in the first place. Abreu,Sheffield, Gianmbi, Damon et al.

    When the Yankes cleaned house and got Younger they won. He was suggesting the Patriots clean house too, because they aren’t the threat they once were.

    Damon is last one in that broke down aging group. I love that Cashman didn’t fall for the Contract year and WS performance of Damon, and looks like MLB isn’t buying it either! HE STILL ISN’T SIGNED.

  16. blake January 16th, 2010 at 12:19 pm

    Go Johnny, there is a big difference between giving big money multi year deals to older players like Sheffield, giambi,etc.. and a one year stopgap type deal to Damon.

    There wouldn’t be nearly as much risk and it wouldn’t affect their flexibilty for next year

  17. haiku-man January 16th, 2010 at 12:19 pm

    No way the Yankees take on Nick Johnson, with a an injury history, and Rocco another injury prone. Cashman just got rid of Pavano the serial injury offender, he still has common sense!

  18. Tucker January 16th, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    Good job Chad. This post is exhibit A why I don’t visit sites such as River Ave Blues. Those guys may be prolific, but they’d be nothing w/out
    sites like this that break news.

  19. Go Johnny ! January 16th, 2010 at 12:25 pm


    Damon and the demon seed Boras, held out for three yrs, and no body was biting! If Cashman could’ve signed him for a year, it would be a done deal, remember?

    Boras said if i wasn’t an offer for 3/13M don’t bother offering! CASHMAN WENT SHOPPING elsewhere.

  20. Noreaster January 16th, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    I saw the last post and immediately thought of GB7. I must say that I am looking forward to seeing how Gardner plays this year. I like having someone like that on the team and batting in the 9 spot seems a perfect place to find out what we have.

  21. Frank January 16th, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    “But, if it is controllable then he would be a perfect fit for a RH platoon player in LF”

    There’s no evidence to suggest he could handle that load physically, even on the wrong side of a platoon.

  22. William Buckner January 16th, 2010 at 12:30 pm

    “He might deny it anyway, but all I can do is ask the question. And Cashman seemed pretty adamant about the story being false.”

    Why hurt credibility or be secretive about Rocco Baldelli? I’d guess he’d be candid.

  23. lets go yankees January 16th, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    January 16th, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    Good job Chad. This post is exhibit A why I don’t visit sites such as River Ave Blues. Those guys may be prolific, but they’d be nothing w/out
    sites like this that break news.


    Too bad River Ave Blues broke this news which Chad clearly states at the bottom of his post…

  24. ortforshort January 16th, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    When you’re a contender and counting on the Rocco Baldelli’s of the world, you’re doing something wrong. Nothing against Baldelli. He was a big time prospect who got knocked down by an illness. We’re all rooting for him to do well (even when he was with Boston). The point is, you pick this guy up on a flier, not as part of a plan.

  25. 86w183 January 16th, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    Just add Baldelli and Byrnes to the list of RH hitting potential part time LF candidates. That list includes Marcus Thames, Reed Johnson and others. Eventually one of them will get a contract and join Gardner out there.

    It would be great to see Rocco come all the way back to what he was, but I don’t know if anyone completely understands his illness… including him.

    Byrnes at his best tops all other candidates, but there must not be anything left if Arizona is willing to eat something like $ 11 Million.

  26. blake January 16th, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    “Boras said if i wasn’t an offer for 3/13M don’t bother offering! ”

    Hes not saying that now I’d imagine.

  27. Damon enjoy 27....think 28 January 16th, 2010 at 1:02 pm


    The journal article on Gardner is a good read. Gardener is ready to battle for a spot. He says he’s working on bunting, and shortly after Xmas has started batting, and will be at spring training 2wks before the others to be ready for everyday work. He’s hungry for the chance to start in LF. batting.

    I hope Kevin can help him bunt better and increase his opb.

  28. vinny-b (NJ and Granderson - thank you Cashman!) January 16th, 2010 at 1:17 pm

    Rocco Baldelli has the best name in baseball

  29. jennifer January 16th, 2010 at 1:17 pm

    Funny reading the comments on the FB they are so ticked at “rocco” and it probably isn’t him.! LOL

  30. jennifer January 16th, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    And what is even funnier is Rocco was with the soxs what a season? And they are ticked that he might sign with the Yankees? Give me a break.

  31. Damon enjoy 27....think 28 January 16th, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    How many times does the Yankees steal one from the sawx? It’s a slap in the face and makes them feel shunned. They’re still reeling from ALEX,and TEX AS THE ONES THAT GOT AWAY!

  32. Bill January 16th, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    “Rocco Baldelli has the best name in baseball.”

    I’ll second that.

  33. S.o.S. January 16th, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    I thought it was BOOF BONSER.

  34. vinny-b (NJ and Granderson - thank you Cashman!) January 16th, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    anyone know where the name Rocco comes from? Is it short for anything? Never heard of a Saint Rocco

  35. Buddy Biancalana January 16th, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    I thought it was Buddy Biancalana. =P

  36. vinny-b (NJ and Granderson - thank you Cashman!) January 16th, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    “I thought it was BOOF BONSER”
    lol SoS

  37. m January 16th, 2010 at 1:51 pm

    Nope. It’s gotta be “Mel”.


  38. Bill January 16th, 2010 at 1:52 pm

    “I thought it was BOOF BONSER.”

    I guess the difference for me is, I’d love to have the name Rocco Baldelli. Whereas, I’d probably slip into a deep state of depression if my name was Boof.

  39. Buddy Biancalana January 16th, 2010 at 1:54 pm


    Anyone guess your name yet?

  40. S.o.S. January 16th, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    Take that back.

    best first name BOOF
    best last name BASTARDO

  41. Rich in NJ January 16th, 2010 at 1:57 pm

    Derek Sanderson Jeter

    That is all.

    (If you remember Derek Sanderson.)

  42. S.o.S. January 16th, 2010 at 1:57 pm

    Imagine if the families hooked up and called their kid BOOF BASTARDO.

  43. Buddy Biancalana January 16th, 2010 at 1:58 pm

    I remember former Yankee Scott Derek Sanderson.

  44. Rich in NJ January 16th, 2010 at 2:01 pm

    I’m talking about the hockey player.

  45. Buddy Biancalana January 16th, 2010 at 2:04 pm

    I know, was just joshing.

  46. Rich in NJ January 16th, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    *slaps head*

  47. Drive 4- 5 January 16th, 2010 at 2:15 pm

    I wouldnt mind seeing the Yanks sign Rocco to a minor league contract. On the other hand, I want no part of Eric Bynes. Bynes is one of the most over-rated player in all of baseball.Only 3 times in 10 years has Bynes obp been higher than .335 ( pathetic .321 for his career) and he strikes out twice as often as he walks.

  48. crawdaddy January 16th, 2010 at 2:25 pm

    “Of course, this is all speculation, but as I said, we can only go by what is reported.”


    You can go on by what’s reported, but that doesn’t mean the rest of us have to do the same.

    IMO, Cashman is negotiating by just waiting to see how low of a price can he acquire another outfielder.

  49. torrey January 16th, 2010 at 2:27 pm

    Actually Facebook was right. They did come to a mutual agreement, that Rocco wasn’t going to be on the Yankees

  50. rover January 16th, 2010 at 2:31 pm

    Shopping for a player means you buy the best player you can for said team. If that player happens to fill a perceived need to hit from one side or the other great. You don’t let the best player go due to the side he hits from. Lots of reasons to pass by a player, that is not one of them.

  51. MikeinBH January 16th, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    Rocco’s Wikipedia page says he is a member of the Yankees. It says he signed a 1-year deal on Feb. 2, 2010 (HAHAHA- how can that be???)

  52. Brian $$$$man January 16th, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    We’re close to a one year deal with Jermaine Dye ( re:

  53. Bob Michaels January 16th, 2010 at 3:53 pm

    Payroll limits for the Yankees is a CASHMAN myth.

  54. Horace Clarke January 16th, 2010 at 4:31 pm

    There is no way i would want Damon returning to the Yankees. If he was to return at such a reduced salary, i think he would be a disgruntled player. Also, does anyone recall his defense from last year? IMO, it was below average at best. How many times was he near the wall and made a ridiculous jump or attempt at it. Damon’s only worth to this team is as the #2 hitter for this lineup, and with the Nick Johnson signing it really doesn’t leave Joe G many options. I think Cashman is just parting ways and thankful of his play for the past four years. I think they are prepared to go with a platoon of gardner and ____(fill in the blank with Hoffman, Reed Johnson etc…someone who can and will provide better than average defense).

  55. Yankswin27 January 16th, 2010 at 4:33 pm

    Were not close to a deal with dye what are you talking about?

  56. pistol pete January 16th, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    This is absolute nonsense, all these imposters stink and Baldelli could be the worst of the group. Do you think these other teams have given uo on these Great fit left field platoon players because they’re any good, no, they’re not signing them because they stink. Damon is a proven commodity and now is very cheap. Sign Johnny, 1 yr 6-7 mil plus incentives.

  57. Travis Bickle January 17th, 2010 at 8:44 am

    So long Johnny it`s been good to know ya.
    No arm, Poor glove, No longer a base stealer and swings like a girl. Oh and thanks Hal for NOT letting Cashgirl sign swing and miss Cameron. The only thing better than his defence is his ability to whiff. The team needs only another right handed bat to plug in the outfield/bench. Not Johnny noodle arm.

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